The success of a company depends first and foremost on its employees. This is why it should be a primary concern of managers to provide those very people with psychological safety at work. What exactly is meant by this and how you can also embed this concept in your company, we can work out together.
Psychological safety determines how openly team members communicate within a company. Therefore, the main thing here is to be open and to share uncertainties and mistakes with each other. It’s about openly communicating things that people don’t normally like to talk about – especially in the work environment. After all, everyone wants to show their best side. Or at least maintain an appearance that has been cultivated over years in order to be taken seriously. But those days are over.
Modern companies with their finger on the pulse don’t need employees who pull out their elbows against their colleagues. But people who share their know-how with each other and admit their weaknesses. So, the trend is back to people with all their faults – and the immeasurable potential that lies within them as soon as they can admit them to themselves.
This is where psychological safety comes in, allowing employees to communicate openly and honestly with each other without fear that their actions, thoughts and ideas will be their undoing.
Psychological safety aims to move forward confidently, reliably, clearly and meaningfully in the knowledge that one’s existence in the company will have a positive impact. And to do so gladly with this knowledge in mind.
When you think of a place of well-being, you might think of your home, your family. So typically the place where you can be who you are and be appreciated and liked for it. In the working world, things are often different. Because not everyone has understood that the workplace also has to be a place of well-being so that people can thrive there. At the end of the day, that makes for one thing above all: wasted potential.
Psychological safety aims to ensure that all employees, from managers to work groups, can show vulnerability and trust and, last but not least, are willing to take responsibility.
The workplace as a place of well-being thanks to psychological safety
… also always means taking a task particularly seriously. If an employee admits in a meeting that he or she has not understood a question or a task, he or she can not only work through the task, but also come up with additional solutions. If the company creates this optimistic and trusting atmosphere, the employee can contribute more strongly and effectively. The task becomes his task.
It is not weak to admit not having understood something right away, it even requires courage. This mindset is important to open up.
Giving and receiving trust...
… is the engine of personal growth. If you trust yourself, you increase your credibility with others. Trusting others increases solidarity. Connectedness that strengthens the team and the sense of togetherness in the company. Things that build character as well as the competencies of the individual.
Being able to take responsibility...
… makes work easier and leads to faster solutions. If you put off a problem, pass it on to others or are not sure, you always prolong the internal processes. All this costs time. Employees and managers who stand up for solutions are more effective and always act in a solution-oriented manner.
And this is where the circle closes: In a psychologically safe environment, in which employees at every level of the hierarchy are allowed to show themselves vulnerable, in which they are trusted and can take on responsibility, nothing stands in the way of them taking on any tasks. This team works independently, actively and, above all, with pleasure on the success of the company.